I talked in yesterday’s entry about transsexuality having a different modus operandi from other parts of LGBT. At the outset, I do not mean this as a value judgement, that is to say that transsexuals are somehow special and gay men, bisexual men and women, and lesbians are somehow better off, because they too face discrimination difficulty and hardship.
But I do contend that it is a different modus operandi, because of the sometimes dual interplay between sexuality and gender. If you’re into bondage this analogy will be right up ur street. Imagine two ropes tied to something, one above the other. Depending on the forces at play, sometimes the two ropes will rub together, sometimes they will not.
It is much the same for the transsexual. Sometimes their sexuality will stay the same, sometimes not.
However, the really interesting variable here is identity.
With sexuality there is no fundamental change of identity. People may change their hairstyle or their dress sense but fundamentally they are still the same person.
Even though my friend Grant Cassford makes a lovely living from his slutty sister Lulu DeLish, as a drag queen he is still Grant fundamentally.
Many make much of the fact that they are still the same person as they were before transition, in terms of interests, passions and hobbies for example. However, as Tina Livingstone points out, the outer casing does change, and my firm believe is that it changes the individual for the better. No more hiding, lying, virtual cross dressing as my psychiatrist put it.
But the level of risk is greater too, as has been said before trans awareness is still relatively infantile compared to other sections of the LGBT community. One does not have to worry about “passing” as a gay man or a lesbian, yet a successful life for the transsexual depends on this affirmation very much.
Risks of isolation and abuse are high, as well as potential loss of friendship. This is why I want to carve out more niches for myself in the trans arena as I believe it may serve me better long term.
I too, share the beliefs of both CN Lester and Roz Kaveney in term of being trans as well as disability.
The fact is, many people do define their sexuality biologically, and they worry about how their own sexuality would be perceived if say, they took home a trans female with disabilities after a night out. But the fact is, their own sexualities are far more fluid than they give themselves credit for.
I am not stoking division, but I believe it is important to acknowledge these things, if only to make peace with them in my own head.
The cotton ceiling is also pertinent to disability discourse. In a 2008 survey for The Observer , when asked if they had ever had sex with someone with a disability, 70% of respondents said that they did not think they would have sex with someone with a disability.
So this is what makes the gay scene hard. Being reminded of what you miss out on. Hearing others whinging about being single for a few week, sticks a bit.
You see, my mind is limitless. But in a world with a cotton ceiling, that can be a hollow paradox.
It is a different modus operandi. But it is worth it for the simplicity of being able to recognise your true self in the mirror. Whilst others may feel they have lost something, I only feel gain and liberation thank goodness.